By Vida Gustafson

Contributing Writer

Ultimate? Really? Yes. I can without fear of contradiction tell you that these brownies are the ultimate. They strike a perfect balance of fudge and cakey. They are neither too sweet or too bitter. They are extremely hard to resist. Use a quality baking cocoa (also known as Dutch Processed Cocoa) if you can, you’ll be able to taste the difference. This cocoa has been specially processed to neutralize cocoa’s normally acidic ph balance. The flavor is more mellow and rounded, bringing out nuttier flavor notes as opposed to bright citrussy ones. 

The key to the brownie’s crispy shiny shell, is melting the butter and sugar together before bringing the batter together. 


  • 4 eggs
  • 1 c butter
  • 2 c granulated sugar
  • 1/4 c brown sugar
  • 1 1/4 c cocoa
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla 
  • 1 1/2 c flour
  • 2 c chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp instant coffee * optional


Preheat the oven to 350°F. Melt the butter and sugar together in a small saucepan. Do not boil. It’s alright for the sugar to be not entirely dissolved. While this mixture cools slightly, butter a 9-by-13-inch pan. Line with parchment paper for an extra easy cleanup.

In a large mixing bowl, stir together the four large eggs, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder, vanilla and coffee powder (if using). Incorporate your melted butter and sugar mixture and lastly add the flour and chocolate chips. Mix until just combined.

Pour into your baking tin and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the top is set and cracked. If you are using a smaller tin, like an 8 by 8, you will need to bake for at least 45-50 minutes.